Even though I am fully capable of doing things for myself
The time has come to put together my 2014 Reel... I've always employed, as a standard practice, to hire/trade/ask for help from others for my personal work.
1. It shows belief and instills confident ability in other creatives. Something often lacking in our community.
2. It appeals to the wisdom of the "other " perspective. How clients view me, will be much closer to how my peers view me.
3. It balances the "Dunning-Kruger effect."
4. It allows for the wisdom and expertise of others to be seen in your own work, your ability to work with others is vital to the creative life. There are no truly GREAT "one man shows" Every truly incredible work, has multiple experts executing tasks behind the scenes.
5. And Finally, and most importantly, It addresses head on, a phenomenon I call "drivers blindness"
I first considered this approach when about 3 years ago I encountered a phenomenon. Web designers with no website, Photographers with no head shots, mechanics driving old beaters. This is something I came to call "drivers blindness," due to something that happened about a year ago (there may be some other term for it that I'm unfamiliar with, and I would love to read studies on it if you know of any)
About a year ago I rented a friends car, he left town and dropped the car off at my house, the first day I started it up, I had a hard time turning the key, I promptly noticed the funny noises in the cabin, the rear headlamps didn't function... over time other problems came to light, numerous fuses had been blown and certain functions didn't work, the breaks were worn down, and you had to break much sooner, and with caution. The rear treads were bald etc. When I called my friend about these issues, he told me that when he left the car in my position, it was in perfect condition, he was noticeably upset, and it seemed that he believed me responsible for these issues.
I fixed many of them myself, upon inspection, his headlamps were completely FULL of water, like little fish bowls.... something that had been happening over months, as well as other issues that obviously had taken time to develop. But I realized that I had a name for this phenomenon I encountered years ago.
Driving this car for so long and getting used to it's "quirks" he became unaware that they even existed, he knew how to turn the key a certain way, so as to start the engine smoothly, he never drove at night, so he never noticed that the lamps had blown, he didn't use cruise control, or drive on the highway, so he never knew that he had multiple blown fuses. Being so entrenched in personal patterns, and acclimated to numerous defects, he attached such defects to me, it must have been my use that caused these issues. In truth, it was not my use, but rather, desensitization and established patterns that caused him to never notice, and thusly, deal with numerous issues.
This is something that can be avoided when others are brought in on a project. When the mechanic employs another mechanic to fix his car, he's less likely to drive a beater, when a film maker, hires and editor to do his reel, he has a great reel, when a web-designer, hires another web designer to make his website, he has a website that displays his work beautifully, When a photographer, needs head shots, he hires another photographer for amazing photos. ect ect.
Number 5 is the primary reason I involve others in their given field, It's also the reason I seek out business mentors, it's the reason I show others my work, It's the reason I'm constantly studying the old masters of various arts and comparing myself to them, and not to others in a similar or lesser skill tier, and it's the reason I will take the time to mentor others, and to be constructively honest about their work, just like my mentors are with me, All of this helps us prevent "drivers blindness."
I've seen this happen to churches, and marriages and friendships as well, often problems go so long, and people become so acclimated to them that they don't notice them, and all the sudden they have a broken down vehicle, left with a broken marriage, a church in shambles, a long lost friend...They don't quite know what happened, was it the loss of intimacy? Something that was said or done? No, it was probably the slow, long, mechanical breakdown that no one noticed...
and that tore people apart...
and left them wondering why...
Let's prevent that in our art, and in our relationships. Bring in the foreign driver, let them see what you cannot, what you are wholly incapable of seeing. First, see your own blindness, get settled into the fact that you CAN'T fix it, the only thing you can do is borrow other people's eyes.
CUT by CUT is a blog about the art of film editing. It challenges norms, catalyzes ideas, and uses science, social psychology, and art history to think about filmmaking.
Aaron is a full time film editor based on the east coast. He thinks a lot, drinks a lot of rockstar, only wears black and red, and works everyday to become better at the art of film editing.